Friday, February 25, 2011
One of the problems with being part of the 'good guys' is that unlike the screaming rightwing whinge-and-whine crowd, we tend to keep our peace unless seriously pushed. Don't believe me? Okay: where's the liberal-minded equivalent of Glenn Beck, Andrew Bolt, Miranda Devine, and Rush Limbaugh?
Seriously: loony rightwingers are huge frickin' whiners. They like nothing more than a soapbox where they can jump up and down, scream and rant and cry out about their victim status. As a result of this, they often look bigger than they really are. (Like toadfish. Or bullies in general.)
Case in point -- this article:
This is a response to a survey carried out by the University of Western Sydney, by the way. (Who knew Western Sydney even had a university? Is there a Bachelor of Bogan available? Sorry... cheap shot. But fun. And relevant, because of the image of Western Sydney as a low-income, reactionary sort of demographic, which makes the information from this survey all the more interesting.)
The upshot of this article is that far from racism being horribly rampant in Australia, only about one in ten of the population holds what we'd call racist views. Further: the only country the surveyors could name that showed MORE overall tolerance than Australia was Canada, and that, apparently, by not very much at all.
That. Is. So. Fucking. Cool.
What it means for you and me is this: speak the hell up. Don't be afraid. Don't be put off by the vitriol of the Abbotts, the Morrisons, the Bolts and their ilk. Speak out. There are more of us than them by a long, long margin. We are the majority. They are the minority. Speak up and let them know.
Don't ignore it when you hear it. Don't turn away and say nothing. You may fear that publically confronting a racist asshole could get you into trouble. Well - it may, yeah. But the odds are that most of the crowd will be on your side, and if you speak up loud and clear, you may well find that other people are encouraged to speak up alongside you.
I'd guess it's probably not just racism, either. I suspect (given the size and popularity of Mardi Gras in Sydney, for example) that we're not so terrified of homosexuality as they'd like us to be either. And who knows? There may actually be a lot more of us who think like sane creatures on a whole range of issues!
The Egyptians did it. The Tunisians did it. The Libyans are trying like hell to do it. And in Wisconsin, even some of the Yankees are giving it a go.
Speak up. Be heard. There's enough of us to drown out the tirade of hate and fear, and maybe together, achieve something positive for the people of this country, whatever colour or creed they happen to be.